Early in the Covid-19 pandemic, former President Donald Trump announced that he would deny entry of individuals into the United States who had been in China within 14 days of their travel date using an executive order called a Presidential Proclamation. As of late August 2021, not only do travel restrictions remain in effect for visitors from China remain, but they have expanded to include travelers from the EU’s Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, Ireland, India, Brazil, South Africa, and Iran. 

However, there is good news. If you are a medical student or graduate looking to attend a training program in the US and you have a valid visa or are eligible for ESTA – also known as the U.S. Visa Waiver Program – you may be able to receive a National Interest Exception (NIE) allowing you to travel to the US without spending 14 days in a country not subject to travel restrictions.  


The AMO difference

AMOpportunities is one of the only Clinical Experience companies that has an immigration attorney on staff (in fact – it’s me!). Therefore, if you book a rotation through our platform, your AMO Coach and I will work together to guide you through the NIE process, generate supporting documentation for your application and if necessary, even reach out to the U.S. consulate on your behalf. 

Once you’ve been granted an NIE, it is valid for up to 12 months and works for multiple entries so long as the purpose of your travel indicated in the approved NIE. 

If you’re interested in a rotation but you’d like to learn more about how we can guide you through the NIE process, reach out to an advisor at advisors@amopportunities.org. 

If you are wondering whether you are a citizen of a country who is a member of the ESTA visa waiver program, find the list of included countries below. You can find more information here 

  • Andorra 
  • Australia 
  • Austria 
  • Belgium 
  • Brunei 
  • Chile 
  • Czech Republic 
  • Denmark 
  • Estonia 
  • Finland 
  • France 
  • Germany 
  • Greece 
  • Hungary 
  • Iceland 
  • Ireland 
  • Italy 
  • Japan 
  • Latvia 
  • Liechtenstein 
  • Lithuania 
  • Luxembourg 
  • Malta 
  • Monaco 
  • Netherlands 
  • New Zealand 
  • Norway 
  • Poland 
  • Portugal 
  • San Marino 
  • Singapore 
  • Slovakia 
  • Slovenia 
  • South Korea 
  • Spain 
  • Sweden 
  • Switzerland 
  • Taiwan 
  • United Kingdom

Disclaimer: This post should not be taken as legal advice for your individual situation. Ben is legal counsel for AMOpportunities, and the intention of this post is to provide general, non-personalized information on the current state of the National Interest Exception Program. Should you wish to receive personalized legal advice, we encourage you to seek out your own U.S. immigration attorney to review your case.